My love story with makeup started with a lipstick. I remember buying Ruby Woo from a M.A.C. Counter, back when there was no Sephora. And, then, when I worked as a beauty editor, I had the privilege to get so many different ones– and I collected them all! And this fall, it’s all about getting back to some lip service.
Photography Ewa Bilinska
HARD TO IMPRESS
My lipstick collection is HUGE. But… I don’t know what other people’s lipstick collections look like, but I have about 100 of them. As a makeup artist, and lipstick collector… it’s sad to say, but when it comes to colours, you pretty much get the same shades released over and over. So if you want to innovate, you usually have to mix up your own stuff. But this fall, I’ve seen a few shades that I don’t have in my collection… well until now!
MYTHICAL CHOCOLATE BURGUNDY
I’ve talked about it with some friends, you know… just to make sure… I wasn’t crazy. But this “Mythical Burgundy” is a quintessential fall shade: somewhere between chocolate and wine. We’ve all seen it in pictures, but it’s never been found at a counter, until now—dare I say? The closest I’ve seen to this mix of brown and red is X-S by M.A.C., but it’s now a discontinued shade from the 90s.
Over the years, whenever a campaign has appeared with this chocolaty/wine shade on the lips of the model, I’ve thrown myself at the counter. But the shades would always be too violet, or more red, than brown. Is this Photoshop trickery… or just makeup artists taunting us? But it’s a question of mixing up your own shade.
Here is a roundup of the newest chocolate-brown/wine shades to get those deliciously editorial and naughty lips. A good idea is to add a wine or a warm red shade to the center of a brown shade; if you like to line your lips, Mahogany by M.A.C. is a great pencil for this. Brown can look flat on it’s own, and the red will make your lips more alive and more dimensional.
860 SPICE & 979 BOLD MAUVE Colour Riche L’ORÉAL
From the drugstore come these two contenders. Bold Mauve is a velvet matte texture, from the new Ultra Matte finish. The colour is on the mauvy-brown-neutral-taupe side that is in fashion at the moment, but it’s still flattering if you happen to be over 25. Although not a true chocolate shade, the brown undertone makes it a contender for those who want to dip theirs toes into the chocolate pool, but to stay on the “nude” side. Spice on the other hand is the classic Ultra Riche super creamy formula. It’s also very close to the Dior Ultra Radical shade, being more red. It’s a different type of finish, less modern, more creamy, but if you don’t want to custom mix, it’s pretty bang on. 14$CAN each – 3.6g.
10 YUM YUM & 11 FIRE SIDE by #Lipstories SEPHORA
I’m bit behind on the #Lipstories launch by Sephora. I do remember seeing it out of the corner of my eyes… but I’ve been so eyeshadow obsessed this year! Both shades are on the brown side, but Yum is a great for fair skin tones, it will give you the perfect chocolaty-wine effect. While Fire Side is a good “contour” shade with a redder/brick lipstick, or on it’s own for medium to deep skintones. Both are cream textures, you might have to blot them with a tissue or use some translucent powder to get a matte finish. But hey…at 10$CAD for 4 grams of product it’s not to sneeze at. Notable other shade: 23 -AFTER HOURS, a warm matte version of a classic red shade, very classy.
Velour Extreme Matte Lipstick by LAURA MERCIER
This new line totally rocks… I mean besides this beautifully rich chocolate brown called ROCK (a caramel brown with a red underdone). I have to say that all the other colours are stunners and the finish is super matte. The only caveat is it can seriously dry your lips. The formula glides on like a cream but the finish looks like you set your lips with powder–no shine. Also if you want to build up the colour, once the lips are saturated, gliding the tip moves the pigment that is already on the lips–it’s best to pat on the finishing layer. All the dark shades are stunning, as well as the nudes. Worth checking out – 34$CAN for 1.4g – it’s the priciest per gram. It comes with a sharpening tip at the end.
ULTRA RADICAL – DIOR
From the new launch (see below) the shade Ultra Radical is modern brown-burgundy with a slight violet undertone instead of red. It’s the least chocolate while staying truly a wine shade. But it’s not a deep red or deep pink, either. If you have a medium to deep skintone you can wear this shade all day, all night. If you’re fair, then it’s straight to Vamp City, don’t pass go, and don’t collect 200$. Somehow all the other colours were very pigmented on the lips, except Ultra Radical… it’s the sheerest shade… I even compared it to a colour like Ultra Cult (a true aubergine) and Cult was more pigmented. Chances are you will have to line your lips, unless your lips are big, or are well defined naturally. You can also pat it on with a finger for a beautiful stain, 43$CAN for 3.2g, at all DIOR counters. The other shade is Ultra Star, a bright coral red.
ULTRA RED by DIOR – A NEW LAUNCH
I got a hold of these shades from the new collection of Ultra Rouge lippies by Dior. You’ll find good a mix of “new nudes”, a good selection of bright shades as well as über cool fall vamp shades. I have to give five stars to the following shades for their originality and wearability! And on my wish list… except for Cult, which I already bought.
986 – Ultra Radical – A chocolate-wine shade with a hint of violet undertone.
971 – Ultra Cult – An aubergine hue, a violet black, very vamp, very cool-toned.
600 – Ultra Tough– A mauvy-beige-brown hue that is very “neutral”.
I really like the innovative texture; the finish is closer to a liquid lipstick, and more comfortable to wear. It has a creamy matte finish on the lips. Most shades are opaque, except for Ultra Radical. It’s a very hydrating formula. On the back of the hand they swatched a bit shiny, but on the lips it’s more of a matte finish. I tended to over apply, which can make it feel sticky or shiny for some colours–just blot it with a tissue. This is probably the best lip release this year, because of the great shades and the unique texture of the product.
FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY TEST
In real life, these colours looked much darker, but with flash photography colours get lighter and the reddish hue is more pronounced. There is a slight bounce of light to the right, where you can see my over lining. This will give you a better idea of the proportion of brown to to red. My lips naturally have a mid-pinky-mauve hue, which will darken the lipstkick and pull more red/pink. In real life, Yum by Sephora, looks a bit redder, but has the same intensity as Laura Mercier Rock, next to it!
Clockwise from top-left: 1) Sephora Yum all over, Fire Side to contour, a touch of Dior Ultra Mad in the center to warm the colour. 2) Laura Mercier Rock, lined using same product on a brush. 3) Dior Ultra Red in Ultra Radical, exterior lined with M.A.C. Nightmoth lip pencil over the lip colour. 4) Loreal Paris Bold Mauve, I only used a brush to blur the bottom lip.